A 91-year-old man faces life in jail for trafficking cocaine.
A 91-year-old man, Victor Twartz, was arrested at the Sydney Airport on a flight from New Delhi, India, with 4.5kg of cocaine concealed in over 27 bars of soap, but claimed he was taken advantage of by some people in Delhi he met online, who gave him the parcels to take to someone in Australia, reports Daily Mail.
The retired Oral Surgeon, a one time elder of the Seventh Day Advesntist Church, was caught with the drugs valued at $1.3m
Police allege Twartz carried 27 bars of soap, filled with 4.45kg of cocaine, on a flight from New Delhi to Sydney on July 8.
Australian Federal Police arrested Twartz after a search of his luggage uncovered packets of soap that tested positive for cocaine and if convicted, he could face a maximum penalty of life imprisonment.
But the 91-year-old told ABC's 7.30 that he was given the bag before he boarded his flight to Sydney with gifts for someone back in Australia.
A church member at the Woollahra Adventist Church where Twartz was once known as Brother Twartz, elder Andrew Spaile, told Daily Mail Australia that he knew Twartz and believed he was 'gullible and could have done something stupid'.
Spaile added that it was not the first time Twartz, who no longer attends the Woollahra congregation and is not listed on the Seventh Day Adventist state conference books, had been tricked.
"I know he's been taken advantage of before, financially. There's now way he would be involved in this.
I could easily imagine him falling for that. He's innocent. He's pretty advanced in years. He could have just done something stupid."
Twartz will appear in court again on October 6 after his bail was continued.